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BLAC launches campaign first for RSPB

Barradale Leagas Arnold Campbell are launching a dramatic new multi-media campaign for the RSPB to help save the albatross from extinction

London, 30 August 2006: Launching on a rolling basis throughout September 2006, the RSPB’s integrated advertising campaign, ‘Once extinct, you can only imagine’, features a series of eye-opening and imaginative interviews with children. It is the first time the charity has launched such a large multi-media campaign and the first time any charity has used bluecasting.

The campaign sees the RSPB reaching beyond its traditional audience and, for the first time, the RSPB is focussing on finding younger and urbanite charity supporters in addition to its traditional supporter base.

“To expand our membership and supporter base we want to reposition the RSPB in the minds of our prospect audience as a dynamic and leading conservation organisation,” says Jonathan Wright, Brand Marketing Manager. “Few people realise just how active the RSPB is as a conservation charity, both in the UK and around the world, and we needed to change minds to help save the albatross.”

The campaign includes posters, press, TV ‘bumper’ commercials on Sky One, direct mail and door drop literature. Short commercials will also appear on transvision screens in key London stations – the first time a charity has used bluecasting. Underpinning this activity, BLAC digital has created the campaign website ( and viral drivers.

Work by the renowned artist Quentin Blake will form the core of PR activity to take place in the next month on London’s South Bank.

“When we conducted our focus groups, the majority of people didn’t know what an albatross was, let alone it was under threat of extinction. The campaign message is clear – act now or the albatross will become extinct,” says Paul Forecast, the RSPB’s London Manager.

Chris Arnold, Executive Creative Director at BLAC adds, “We asked schoolchildren what they thought an albatross was, what it ate, looked and sounded like. The answers we got were highly imaginative. The trouble is, if we don’t act to save these majestic birds, our children will never see a real one and can only imagine. What started out as research turned into a powerful creative idea.”

About the Albatross

• 19 of 21 Albatross species are threatened as a result of industrial-scale long-line fishing, a technique used to catch valuable fish such as tuna. The lines are over 100 miles long, the birds try to eat the bait, get caught on the hidden hooks and drown

• An albatross has an 11 foot wingspan

• It can live until the age of 60

• Many albatross species mate for life and can only reproduce once every other year. When an albatross is killed, the partner and chick are un-provided for and unable to survive

• Every year, 100,000 albatrosses are killed by longline fishing hooks – that’s one every five minutes

• The RSPB, working with Birdlife International, has created an Albatross Task Force to advise both on-shore and sea fishermen about cheap and simple adaptations to their longline fishing methods to minimise Albatross deaths. Solutions include attaching bird-scaring streamers to the fishing vessels to discourage the birds away from the lines, dying the bait so the bait is camouflaged and weighting lines so the bait falls below sea level



The integrated campaign will predominantly run in the London area and is targeted at a younger audience as well traditional RSPB members.


A series of charming ‘bumper’ commercials (on Sky One and SkyThree) feature interviews conducted with children in a series of focus groups describing what they think an albatross looks, eats and sounds like.

Press and poster:

The adverts feature the highly imaginative drawings of the children describing what they think an albatross looks like. The headline reads ‘Once extinct, you can only imagine’.

Big screen station advertising: bluecasting

Advertisements will run across transvision screens in 10 key London stations used by commuters on their way in and out of London. This will be the first time a third sector organisation has used blue-casting.

Direct mail

The advertising campaign is supported by a direct mail campaign and door drop. The direct mail campaign features a satchel-like envelope with postcard art created by children from the Thorpe Hall School. These postcards feature images of what they imagine an albatross to be like.

Digital and viral

The website – – features banners, PPC, and short clips of the children describing what they imagine and albatross to look and sound like.

On-the-ground media

There will be RSPB displays and a ‘free to enter’ competition taking place along London’s South Bank including outside the Tate Modern, Millenium Eye and the London Aquarium. In addition there will be collections in Westminster, Kensington and Chelsea and Islington and at 10 mainline stations: Liverpool Street, Paddington, Waterloo, Euston, Victoria, London Bridge and tube: Great Portland Street, Tottenham Court Road, Oxford Circus, Edgware Road

PR activity

PR activity will feature the works of artist, Quentin Blake. Details to follow.


BLAC (Barradale Leagas Arnold Campbell) is a creative and strategically driven integrated advertising agency specialising in Change Marketing. They were appointed by the RSPB in February this year.


The RSPB is the UK charity working to secure a healthy environment for birds and wildlife, helping to create a better world for us all. With over 1 million members it is one of Europe’s largest wildlife conservation charities.

Notes to editors:

Footage and stills from the advertising and print campaigns are available on request

For more information, please contact:

Juliet Harbottle, BLAC Agency
01296 655814 / 0207 395 1998 /0780 824 7844 or email:

This press release was distributed by ResponseSource Press Release Wire on behalf of BLAC Agency in the following categories: Men's Interest, Entertainment & Arts, Leisure & Hobbies, Women's Interest & Beauty, Environment & Nature, Business & Finance, Media & Marketing, for more information visit